If you’re able to charge your EV at your workplace, it should prove to be a convenient and cost-efficient way of keeping the battery topped up.
Increasingly, offices, factories and other workplaces are installing chargers for use by an increasing number of fleets that include EVs. The number of electric fleet vehicles is only going to increase over the next 10 years, so chargers in loading bays and car parks will be commonplace.
If you want to charge while you work, the first thing to do is see if your employer already has chargers, or is considering installing them.
Companies can get government help to help pay for charger installation through the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS), a voucher-based scheme run by the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV) and administered by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). Together, that alphabet soup of agencies contributes to the upfront costs of purchase and installation.
The grant covers up to 75% of the total cost, capped at a maximum of £350 per socket, with organisations able to claim for up to 40 sockets (across all sites).
This means that if your employer hasn’t yet installed a charger, there’s a persuasive financial argument you can put to them. The average price for a fully installed Type 2 7kW twin unit should be around £1,500, after the WCS Grant. But there are benefits for the bosses, too.
Why should employers install workplace chargers now?
As we’ve already mentioned, organisations that use vehicles in any capacity – from delivery vans to company and pool cars – are in the process of switching to EVs. How quick that process takes will depend on the different needs of organisations, but with tightening of emissions regulations in towns and cities, EVs will soon be a necessity for many.
So not only is now the time to switch to EVs for fleets, it’s also the time to install chargers. Companies will inevitably have to do it, to charge its own vehicles: why not now?
Installing chargers will also support employees who wish to contribute to reducing CO2 – and send a positive message about how the organisation addresses corporate social responsibility and sustainability policies. It’s a win-win.
How much does it cost to charge an EV at work?
If you have an employer that provides access to electric vehicle chargers, you could find yourself with reasons to celebrate.
The first is that electricity isn’t classed as a vehicle fuel by HMRC, so there are no Benefit-in-Kind tax payments to make if an employer provides free charging to you as a member of staff. We’re increasingly seeing organisations offer free charging as a perk to staff, while some are also using it as a way of incentivising its employees to go electric.
It will be interesting to see how long companies will continue to pay for staff to charge for free, but if companies commit to using only sustainable electricity, it’s entirely possible that it will continue to be a perk.
However, companies might decide to offer some free time, but charge for anything beyond that. Some organisations that have already installed chargepoints for employees have created their own payment schemes, with fixed-price plans for access.
That form of discounting the cost of electricity for staff would still be a cheap way to charge, though – probably even less than the average 17.2p per kW for a domestic tariff, which is already a third the cost of petrol or diesel.
Workplace charging has benefits for the employer, but the employee is also able to enjoy free (or cheap) fuel for their EV.